“Old School” is the title of a new Australian drama series currently showing on the ABC. I hadn’t bothered to read anything about it until a week or two before it began when an ABC Facebook post alerted me to the fact that it starred Sam Neill and Bryan Brown.
For those of you who are overseas and maybe haven’t seen it yet I read that it is being released internationally by NBC Universal. Both Sam Neill and Bryan Brown should be familiar names through their film roles. Sam Neill has had roles in “Jurassic Park”, “The Hunt For Red October” (one of Hubby’s favourites) and “The Piano” to mention just a few of many films. My favourite film of his is “The Dish”. Bryan Brown has appeared in “Gorilla’s In The Mist”, “FX”, “Cocktail”,”Along Came Polly” and many other films. My favourite is probably “Breaker Morant”.
When two old troupers like this get together to make a TV series you figure it ought to be worth watching especially if it’s on the ABC so I watched the first episode and found that I liked it very much. Sam Neill plays Ted McCabe, a retired cop and Bryan Brown plays Lennie Cahill an ex crim. The two of them are brought together by the botched bank robbery that landed Lennie in jail and Ted in hospital after being shot in the back. They have different goals, Lennie wants his share of the money from the robbery and Ted wants to find out who shot him. Initially they don’t like each other at all but as in all odd couple stories they gradually start to appreciate each other.
Some people have compared “Old School” with the British series “New Tricks”. I don’t agree. Yes, it has retired people solving crimes and yes, they usually manage to do it before the police do but that’s all. I loved “New Tricks” but I think that this is different enough not to be considered just a copy. It does have elements of humour as Lennie and Ted find themselves in awkward situations. It’s very important to me that I like the characters in a TV show or movie or I can’t watch it no matter how good the plot is or how clever the effects. Ted and Lennie are both likeable and Bryan Brown particularly makes me care about Lennie and want him to make a go of life outside of jail.
Eight episodes have been made for this series. I don’t know if there will be more. Both actors are busy working on other projects already but I certainly hope that there will be one more series at least.